Friday, September 20, 2013

Six Spinning Blades of Fury

I had a little time between getting the Hexa and when we went live with the podcast, so of course, I had to give it a shot.  I bound it to my radio, loaded up mission planner, did the calibration song and dance, set up flight modes, and gave it a try.  Acro mode flew pretty well, a little soft for my taste but not bad.  Stabilized mode was interesting to say the least, and altitude hold was just plain stupid.  It bounced up and down like a 5 year old on Halloween candy!

Thursday night, I spent a little time tweaking the PIDs, and while it isn't perfect, it is better.  Stable mode is much more stable, though I need to do the auto trim routine.  Acro mode is nice now, and man, this thing is fast!    Altitude hold is still crazy, but I have at least figured out why.  Obviously this thing is stupid powerful, and until I ballast it properly to account for the weight of the camera it will carry I will tweak curves to get altitude hold to work properly.

The compass and GPS are working quite well, as is the telemetry,  I have not yet noticed any frame or motor/prop issues, but as I get a little more time on it, those issues, if any, will become more apparent.

My immediate goals are to spend more time getting the PIDs as good as possible, and then spend a little time getting to know the machine.  I am going to try to induce oscillations during flight, just to be sure I have everything set correctly.  Once I am happy with that, then I will move on to altitude hold and position hold.  After that..its on to RTH and missions.

I did discover my laptop doesn't like the Mission Planner for some reason...of course, I haven't booted it into windows in so long..I need to look and see if there is a version of Mission Planner for Linux.  

I should mention, the Hexa uses Arducopter on an APM 2.5 system, instead of my "usual" MultiWii.  Ardupilot is very capable, but it is VERY different from MultiWii!

More to follow..

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